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Number of Bradford cases of children in care falls
8:00am Thursday 20th September 2012 in News
The number of full-time social workers dedicated to childcare in Bradford fell from 187 to 178 in just six months as the number of children in care dropped to 889, councillors will hear at a Scrutiny Committee meeting next week.
The drop in staff dedicated to caring for youngsters has been balanced by falls in the child care issues to be dealt with, according to officer’s reports.
These state: “There have been no significant changes to the overall workloads of social workers, or pressures upon the service since the last report.”
And the report to the Children’s Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee insists that social work services for young people in the district remain “strong, robust and well managed”.
“My reading of this report so far is that previous work has led to improvements, but I shall be wanting to find out everything from the officers at the meeting,” Coun Engel said.
Referrals to Social Care Services fell from 5,498 in 2011 to 4,859 for the year ending in June 2012 and the number of children classed as “in need” reduced from 8,518 to 7,659 in the same period.
Children from ethnic communities are under-represented among children in care at 32.7 per cent compared to 34.6 per cent in the local population and in the number of children subject to child protection issues.
One area where figures have increased is the number of children in Public Law Care Proceedings with 227 cases in the last recorded 12 months compared to 187 in the previous year.
However, a positive statistic is that more adoptions – with a rise to 51 – meant five more children were taken out of care in the past year.